Meet Hala Ziady | #IamJLL


This week lets get to know Hala. She works in Human Resources at Sazerac. We are thankful for her love for the league and we are excited to feature Hala this week!

When did you join JLL?
What was your favorite project during your time with the League?
Being Provisional Co-Chair with Reid Hafer. We were the first group to split the Provisional year out from a full year to a Fall and Spring class. We also implemented Bloom Boutique as the Provisional Project for the spring class which went on for years as it’s own project. Bloom Boutique dressed high school girls for prom that would maybe not get to attend otherwise.

What did you personally learn/gain while being involved in JLL?
What did I not gain is the better question! I built some of the most wonderful friendships near and far (and they continue to grow). I learned more about myself, my capabilities, and what I need to continue to strive to work towards. I learned more about our community and how much one organization can truly impact and make changes. We are a force to be reckoned with!
How do you feel JLL impacts the community?
We hear from so many other non-profits that when they need help, they come to us. They know they can depend on us because we are dedicated women trying to make our community a better place to be and live. I think that speaks volume of our members and who we are. We are the best trained volunteers around.

What were the community initiatives during your time with the League?
Children’s Advocacy. We were still very involved with CASA (court appointed special advocates).

With JLL launching our new Issue Based Community Impact (IBCI) focusing on education, what are ways you see the League impacting education in our community?
I cannot think of a better initiative for us to be involved with. We have the best members and volunteers in this city. Members with wonderful ideas and that know how to execute them. We are purposefully driven and I am excited for the future and the impact we will bring to the growth of our community through education.
If you know someone interested in JLL, what would you tell them?
It’s a wonderful place to learn, grow, make connections and be impactful.

Meet Sarah Mitchell | #IAmJLL


Next up-this lovely lady. Sarah is a publisher with NFocus Magazine. Want to know a little bit more about our league and the people that keep it going? Read on to hear about this great asset to JLL, Sarah Mitchell. #IAmJLL

When did you join JLL?


What was your favorite project during your time with the League?

Keep in Touch. {Keep In Touch initially focused on breast cancer. It is now the Strive and Thrive committee}

What did you personally learn/gain while being involved in JLL?

Personally, I learned the value of what we are doing to make a difference in people’s lives directly in our own community. JLL opened the door for me to make so many new relationships in the community outside of what was in my own backyard.

How do you feel JLL impacts the community?

Overwhelmingly—it is a staple name in the nonprofit world. The ability to say I am a member speaks volumes when I am out meeting with people.

What were the community initiatives during your time with the League?

Be Fit, Be Fine – an initiative focused on improving children’s health through fitness and nutrition education.

With JLL launching our new Issue Based Community Impact (IBCI), what are ways you see the League impacting education in our community?

I think it is a great way to focus on a certain area that needs constant development. So many of us in the League are mothers, and education is at the top of my list. As a mother, I want the best to be given to my children as well as the others in our community. The more we can help, the better the future of our city.

If you know someone interested in JLL, what would you tell them?

It is a great opportunity for a woman to grow professionally as well as personally. The connections you can make are endless, and the rewards that you receive for doing things to help others are irreplaceable.

Meet Heather Kolasinsky | #IAmJLL


Next up: Heather Kolasinsky! We are excited to feature Heather as our next spotlight on JLL for the #IAmJLL campaign. As you can see from the photo, Heather has a heart for others and a heart for our community. Now, I’ll let her tell you a little bit more about what Junior League of Louisville means to her.

When and why did you join JLL?
I joined in fall 2011 after moving to Louisville in May. I tried a lot of different community organizations, but JLL stuck.
What has been your favorite project during your time with the League?
I have really enjoyed serving on the board as member-at-large, AVP Fundraising, and VP Fundraising. The Board becomes its own committee because of the frequency of our meeting and communication.
What have you personally learned/gained while being involved in JLL?
First, leadership and motivational skills. Leading and motivating a volunteer that is choosing to spend her time, money, and sweat with an organization directly translates to skills that are needed to lead and motivate co-workers, managers, spouses, and children.
Second, a sense of community in Louisville. I have made many lifelong friends because of the League, and it has made me feel at home in Louisville. It has also given me a chance to learn about other organizations throughout the city.
Third, appreciation for diversity and what each of us contributes to our community. Some outside the League may view us as a bunch of women within a particular age range, but there is so much more to each of us that the League gives us a chance to showcase. Each of us brings unique life experiences that allows us not only educate, train, and grow each other, but also provides us a platform to improve our community and hopefully make people rethink what they “know” about women in Junior League.
How do you feel JLL impacts the community?
I don’t think it matters how I feel; it matters how others feel. Take our 95th anniversary celebration and general meeting, for instance. A small sampling of our community partners was there, and they know and appreciate what the League does for their organizations and other organizations.
If you know someone interested in JLL, what would you tell them?
Like anything in life, you get out of the League what you put into the League.

Feature: Lindy Street | #IAmJLL

Past and present members make Junior League of Louisville run. We are excited to feature Lindy Street this week for our #IAmJLL campaign.

President, 1990-91
When did you join JLL?
I joined as a provisional in Knoxville, Tennessee, in 1980. I transferred to New Orleans in 1983 and to Louisville in 1985.

What were some of the things you enjoyed most about your time with the League?
I enjoyed training board members of non-profit organizations when I was a member of the New Orleans League. As president of JLL, I devoted my year to membership training. I spent time with each committee to encourage team building and focus on the current projects in the community in which we were involved.
What did you personally learn/gain while being involved in JLL?
Some of my best memories are working and volunteering with the women that gave their time to the League. It was also the best management and leadership training I received anywhere. As president of JLL, I learned invaluable leadership and management skills that have served me well to this day. In my paid working life, my experience with the League prepared me for the responsibility I assumed as senior vice president ofmarketing and public affairs for Columbia/HCA. I also learned the importance of motivating and engaging people. Everyone in the League is a volunteer. You can’t hire or fire volunteers; you engage and motivate the members.
How do you feel JLL impacts the community?
The League is a powerful resource for well-trained volunteers for all types of non-profit agencies. We are a resource for new ideas and initiatives, as demonstrated by some of the non-profits that were founded by JLL. You also won’t find more qualified and dedicated volunteers.
If you know someone interested in JLL what would you tell them?
There is a line in the movie Pretty Woman, that Julia Roberts makes, which I think applies to becoming a member of JLL: “It’s a mistake, bigga mistake” not to get involved with JLL. The training, the opportunity to meet dedicated and talented women, and the exposure to various areas of the community and community leaders are just a few benefits League members will experience. Oh, and who can forget learning The Roberts Rules of Order!






#IAmJLL Feature| Melissa Richards-Person

With the launch of our new #IAmJLL campaign we want to dig deep into what makes Junior League of Louisville so fabulous – the people and faces of the League! First up we want to feature the lovely Melissa Richards-Person. Melissa was the president of Junior League from 2006-2007 and is Vice President, International Marketing at Papa Johns.

Stay tuned for much more and a BIG thank you to Melissa for letting us pick your brain about JLL and what makes it so special.


Why did you join JLL?
I transferred from the Junior League of Seattle, although I was previously a member of the Junior League of Greater Orlando, and I originally joined the Junior League of Toledo. My story’s not that different from most women who join the league; I wanted to meet smart, driven women who were motivated to make things happen in the community!
What was your favorite project during your time with the League?
I have a lot of affection for a project from my first active year in Toledo, Ohio. It was a new community project, all about building kindergarten readiness for kids and instilling the importance of parent involvement in education through experiential learning events. We worked in a neighborhood that was designated the eighth poorest neighborhood in the U.S. at the time, and the reward for completing the program was a family membership to either the zoo, the science center or the art museum—all were organizations that partnered with us to provide lessons in the program—and bus vouchers for transportation to get there for the year after the program. I loved helping shape what the program became, as well as see how much the kids AND their parents learned by being a part of it.
What did you personally learn/gain while being involved in JLL?
It was a graduate-level education in people management! I had to align women with different viewpoints, perspectives, and backgrounds to help move things forward. And I probably learned MORE from the times I wasn’t successful than the times I was! It’s been amazing for me personally and for my career. I couldn’t do what I do now—get input and ideas from people all over the world and keep them focused on a set of goals and projects—without the things I learned at the “University of JLL!”
How do you feel JLL impacts the community?
Everyone typically sees our projects first—Race for the Cure, Be Fit, Be Fine, Noogiefest, etc.—and certainly those are legacies with lasting impact. But what Kentuckiana doesn’t see is our PEOPLE. The training and experience we give and the abilities we nurture in our members…THAT’S the REAL long-lasting impact of JLL. Women may spend 3, 5, 7, 10 years in the League, but they use those skills to serve the community in other organizations, projects, and programs for the next 30, 40, or 50 years! That’s the legacy I wanted to highlight when I thought about #IAmJLL—all of these amazing women whose training in the League has multiplied many times over in community benefit. I’m betting that a lot of people don’t even know that women who are working right alongside them on boards, in high-powered careers, or in creating the “next big thing” in Louisville are a product of the Junior League of Louisville. THAT’s the platform I hope we can highlight on our 95th anniversary!
With JLL launching our new Issue Based Community Impact (IBCI), what are ways you see the League impacting education in our community?
We will do what we always do in JLL. We’ll spend time getting to the root cause and find interesting and unusual ways to address it. The League has had the courage and the creativity to do things like take puppets into schools to talk about disability and inclusion, to partner with an African-American fraternity to develop a summer leadership development “camp” for kids in grades 6-9, or to partner with a theater group to talk to kids about dating violence. I can’t wait to see what this focus on education will bring to the JLL legacy of innovative projects!
If you know someone interested in JLL what would you tell them?
League members are “volunteer venture capitalists!” We find an unmet need, create projects and programs that address it, and then put time, money, and people against them to get them off the ground, sustain them, measure results, and turn them over to the community or other organizations to live on. If you can see yourself anywhere along that chain, you’ll find a place to develop yourself, reinvent yourself, try out new skills, and make lifelong friends while you’re at it.
Please feel free to share any additional thoughts.
The absolute BEST part of the League for me is the way you can completely change your role and your experience from year to year through the placement process. Want to try your hand in managing social media? Go for it! Interested in working hands-on with community organizations? There’s a place for you! Want to challenge yourself to develop management skills by leading a program or committee? You have that chance, too! Every year in the League can be a new opportunity…always with the connecting threads of meetings, social events, and fun that make you feel a part of a larger group of talented women coming together to make our community better.

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Stand Up For Girls: September 2014

  JLL Sept14 2The JLL Stand Up for Girls Committee kicked off the year with an event on September 17, 2014, held at the Maryhurst campus. The theme for the evening was “back-to school” and had about 12 young Maryhurst women in attendance and their staff. They enjoyed healthy snacks and drinks while learning about the nutritional benefits of their meals. The JLL committee members supplied fun games covering different subjects that would be covered in the classroom such as math, geography, history and gym. The girls engaged well and shared lots of good laughter over the different answers offered during the games. Each participant also received a fun bag including pens, markers, pencils, erasers, lip-balm, and colorful pony tail holders – all great supplies for the coming year in school. To continue the theme, girls each decorated a notebook and a pencil case with stickers and markers to have as keepsakes from the activity. The night ended with a powerful exercise: all girls had to go around the table and disclose something they want to learn more of in school in the coming year and something special about themselves.

JLL Sept14 3

“The girls really opened up to us during this activity,” said Raluca Loher, committee member. “They were specific about what they thought made each one special and we celebrated with them. Also during this session, we received many heartfelt thanks and handshakes from the young women who all wanted to know when we would be returning to spend more time with them at Maryhurst. I think all JLL members there would agree that it was a great moment receiving acknowledgement that our time is appreciated and that we make a difference.”

The committee plans monthly events between the months of September and May. Each month’s activity is planned by the eight members, with one member being the month’s lead coordinator. The September activity was under the leadership of member Alina Klimkina, who also serves as committee co-chair. Six of the members were in attendance on September 17 to help with the festivities and interact with the Maryhurst teens.

JLL Sept14 1

Committee members:

Chair: Alina Klimkina 

Chair: Lorie Nicols 

Ashley Alexander Hadley 

Courtney Hunt 

Lauren Langley 

Raluca Loher 

Janal Prybys 

Meredith Smith

Mayor’s Week of Service

From April 12th to April 20th, the Junior League of Louisville will be participating in The Mayor’s Week of Service.  The Done in a Day committee has very creatively collaborated with a number of organizations in town to allow for a full and volunteer filled week.  Our involvements will range from everything to a gardening project with the Louisville Nature Center, to a story time and puppet play Neighborhood House.  In addition, one of the events we are most excited about is on April 17th, where will be cooking, serving, and eating dinner with the students at the West End School.  We have very excitedly invited the Mayor to this event, so hopefully he will attend!

The Mayor’s Week of Service was very gratefully founded by Mayor Greg Fischer.  He stated, “We need your help to make Louisville an even more compassionate city.”  The Junior League of Louisville is so excited to be a part of this week and contribute to the Mayor’s efforts.  We are so proud of all of the events that the Done in a Day committee has created and we can’t wait to hear about all the good things we have done!  To learn more about the Mayor’s Week of Service, you can go to